B.C.’s police watchdog has been called in after a man was killed in an officer-involved shooting at a Maple Ridge home Sunday.
The BC Coroners Service said members were sent to the scene in the area of Colemore Street and 124 Avenue to investigate the death of a man in his 50s.
The Independent Investigations Office (IIO) confirmed they have been notified of an officer-involved shooting and are investigating.
Ridge Meadows RCMP said officers were called to a home in the area around 1:10 p.m. and encountered three people, one of whom had a knife.
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Attempts to subdue the armed man with a conducted energy weapon were unsuccessful, police said, and another officer fired their gun.
RCMP said the victim was pronounced dead at the scene. No one else was injured.
Family members told Global News the 54-year-old victim, who they identified as Kyaw Din, had a history of mental illness and had been back and forth from hospital.
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Thant Din said his brother had been on medication, but had “become problematic” Sunday after either forgetting or refusing to take the pills.
“In the past, my sister would call police, and police would come and take him to hospital,” Din said. “So today my sister called police, but he didn’t want to go.”
Din said his brother barricaded himself in his room at the house, which he shared with two other siblings, and refused to come out when police arrived.
His sister told him and other siblings to come to Maple Ridge from Coquitlam to help translate between their brother and police, he said.
“My sister told police, ‘Don’t do anything, they’re 15 minutes away, they’re on their way,'” Din said. “When we show up, there’s police tape and we can’t go inside.
“They shot him,” he said. “They shot him point blank. They unnecessarily killed someone.”
The victim’s sister, who did not give her name, said she was told to wait outside the home and heard three bangs.
The three officers came outside of the home “about an hour later,” she said, but left the scene before she could talk to them.
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“They lied to me,” she said. “They promised me, ‘we would never shoot your brother, we deal with this all the time,’ and they shot him.”
Neighbours told Global News they saw an officer exit the home shortly after the shots were fired, appearing distraught.
Neither sibling knows what happened immediately before the shooting or what may have prompted it.
Din said he wants to see police held accountable for what happened.
“We’re heartbroken,” he said. “To have a mentally ill person shot in his own home? It’s terrible.”